Statesman: national tea party group targets Straus
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I’m probably guilty of overusing the word “crazy” these days, but sometimes there is no other word to describe what is going on in Republican circles. FreedomWorks, a Washington-based group chaired by former U.S. House Majority Leader Dick Armey, has set its sights on defeating Dewhurst and Straus, the newspaper reports. Matt Kibbee, the organization’s president, says, “The citizens of Texas want to see real reform. They look at other states that are doing more, and they ask: ‘Why not Texas?'” And what does FreedomWorks regard as “real” reform? It’s–the (s0rry, but there’s no other word for it) craziest bill ever to be debated by the Texas Legislature: David Simpson’s attempt to criminalize invasive searches by Transportation Security personnel. This was an attempt by a state to override federal agents carrying out their lawful duties. A U.S. attorney in San Antonio wrote a letter threatening to shut down Texas airports or cancel flights, leading Senate sponsor Dan Patrick to say, “I don’t cave in to heavy handed threats by the federal government.” So I guess Patrick thinks it is just fine for the feds to shut down Texas air travel. He’ll show them. From the Texas Tribune story of May 24, 2011: Two TSA officials visited Patrick at the Capitol earlier today to discuss the legislation. They warned him that the legislation “could close down all the airports in Texas,” he said. After their departure, U.S. Attorney John E. Murphy sent a letter to Speaker of the House Joe Straus and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst saying the bill would “conflict directly with federal law” and that if it became law, “TSA would likely be required to cancel any flight or series of flights for which it could not ensure the safety of passengers and crew” until the agency could seek a court order stopping the measure from being carried out….Straus said that the bill would have made Texas a laughingstock. Okay, I won’t say it’s crazy. How about “plumb loco?”